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November 25, 2013 12:42 PM - ENN Staff
Soaring silently above the landscape, owls search out their prey utilizing acoustic stealth. University of Cambridge, England researchers led by Dr. Justin Jaworski are studying the owl’s wing structure and mechanics to better understand how it mitigates noise to apply that information conventional aircraft design.
Arctic at risk from invasive species
November 25, 2013 09:31 AM - Christopher Ware, Ecologist
As the Arctic ice melts, new shipping routes are opening up for tourism, mining and other commercial purposes, cutting journey times and fuel costs. And as Christopher Ware reports, a new danger arises - invasive alien species disrupting fragile Arctic ecosystems...
Indonesia’s National Airline Carrier Bans Shark Fins
November 24, 2013 04:24 PM - Diana Parker, MONGABAY.COM
Indonesia’s national carrier Garuda Indonesia has joined a growing number of airlines looking to curb the international shark fin trade by banning the transport of shark fins and other shark products on their aircraft.
Climate Change May Affect Butterfly Flight Season
November 22, 2013 08:41 AM - Allison Winter, ENN
Most butterflies will become active or wake from hibernation during the first warm days of spring. However, emerging too early and facing unpredictable elements could be detrimental to the survival of the butterfly as they could encounter frost and harsher weather during consequent days of their short adult lives. According to new research from the University of British Columbia, the Université de Sherbrooke and the University of Ottawa, increasing temperatures caused by global climate change will ultimately affect the flight season timing of these winged beauties.
Deadly Disease Causes Extinction of Darwin's Frog
November 21, 2013 11:24 AM - Allison Winter, ENN
Discovered by Charles Darwin in 1834, Rhinoderma darwinii (better known as Darwin's frogs) have been declared extinct after a killer disease is thought to have wiped out entire populations across Chile and Argentina. According to scientists from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Universidad Andrés Bello (UNAB), Chile, chytridiomycosis is the main reason for this amphibian extinction.
Plug up the COAL; keep it in the ground!
November 19, 2013 12:43 PM - reprint from UNEP Climate Change Conference
Christiana Figueres, executive secretary UNFCCC, Speaks to the World Coal Association in Warsaw: invest in renewables and leave most of your coal underground. The path forward begins in the past, recognizing that coal played a key role in the history of our economic development. From heating to transportation to the provision of electricity, coal has undoubtedly enabled much of our progress over the last 200 years.
Study estimates 400,000 seabirds are killed by gillnets
November 19, 2013 08:57 AM - Jordanna Dulaney, MONGABAY.COM
A recent study from the Biological Conservation journal brings shocking news: every year across the globe, an estimated 400,000 seabirds are killed by gillnets. Gillnets, a common term for any net used to entangle and catch fish, are used all over the world, and at any depth. These nets, whether used in subsistence or commercial fishing, trap anything that swims through them. When unintended marine wildlife, or "bycatch," is caught in these nets, the results can be significant.
Atmosphere locked in time
November 18, 2013 11:23 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN
Amber has long been appreciated for its ability to preserve a moment in time as it encapsulated plant matter, bugs and other organisms. As a tool for ecosystem reconstruction, scientists have learnt a great deal. But recently researchers led by Ralf Tapper of the University of Innsbruck, have begun using amber and other fossil plant resins to reconstruct the composition of Earth's atmosphere from the last 220 million years. The results suggest that atmospheric oxygen was considerably lower in the Earth's geological past than previously assumed.
Tiny algae signal big changes for warming Arctic lakes
November 18, 2013 10:05 AM - Molly Sharlach, MONGABAY.COM
The mighty polar bear has long been the poster child for the effects of global warming in the Arctic, but the microscopic diatom tells an equally powerful story. Diatoms are a type of algae that form the base of the food chain in watery habitats the world over. Disturbances among lake diatoms have exposed the impacts of rapid warming in the Hudson Bay Lowlands of eastern Canada, researchers reported Oct. 9 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
2012 death toll for bats reaches 600,000 due to wind turbines
November 18, 2013 09:14 AM - Editor, ENN
Efforts to promote and develop new forms of sustainable energy have pushed wind power to the forefront. However, this type of power comes with a cost — as it often interferes with birds' and bats' migration, killing hundreds of thousands of these winged species. According to a new study from the University of Colorado Denver, more than 600,000 bats were killed by wind energy turbines in 2012. This has serious environmental repercussions as bats help pollinate crops and help control harmful insect pests.